Refuting an allegation about fasting on the Day of ‘Arafah
Fatwa No: 7233

  • Fatwa Date:17-10-2010 - Thul-Qi'dah 10, 1431
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Question

Is it true that whoever fasts on the Day of ‘Arafah does not die in the next year?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, the Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His Slave and Messenger.

It was reported that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, was asked about the observance of fasting on the Day of ‘Arafah and he replied that it is an Expiation for the sins of the current year and the following.

It is clear that this Hadeeth (narration) does not guarantee that he who fasts on the Day of ‘Arafah will live throughout the next year; it only states that he who fasts on the Day of ‘Arafah will have his sins expiated if Allaah The Almighty wills.  

Therefore the deduction made by some scholars that expiating the sins of the next year indicates that the person who fasts on the Day of ‘Arafah will not die during that year (i.e., he should be living to commit the sins that will be expiated), is wrong because it contradicts the verse in which Allaah The Almighty Says (what means): {And no soul perceives what it will earn tomorrow, and no soul perceives in what land it will die.}[Quran 31:34] That is, whoever is guaranteed to live for a year knows that his life will last until the end of that year at least, something which is impossible because only Allaah The Almighty knows the unseen. 

And Allaah Knows best.

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